SpaceX plan for Broadband via Satellite is backed by FCC

Friday, 16 Feb, 2018

SpaceX could launch the first two demonstration satellites of its proposed network of satellites as early as Saturday, according to documents filed with the Federal Communications Commission.

In a statement released just days before SpaceX launches its first two prototype satellites, Pai urged support of the company's application within the FCC, saying Hawthorne, California-based SpaceX can help reach rural and isolated parts of the country with high-speed Internet.

It is, perhaps, worth noting that Microsat 2a and 2b are iterations of Microsat 1a and 1b; the latter pair was meant to launch in 2016 but that plan was abandoned in favor of further development of the technology for the 2a and 2b satellites. Last year SpaceX requested authority to deploy and operate a constellation of 4,425 satellites operating 700-800 miles above Earth.

The U.S. government is working to try to bring high-speed internet access to rural areas that lack service.

That none of the three companies the FCC recently approved are America-based isn't fully accurate.

WASHINGTON-A top federal regulator on Wednesday recommended approving Space Exploration Technologies Corp.'s plan to provide internet service through huge arrays of earth-orbiting satellites, in a move that could expand broadband availability across the USA and beyond. Musk's January 16, 2015 announcement in Seattle, leaked onto YouTube by an attendee, came just two days after OneWeb announced that Virgin Galactic and Qualcomm had agreed to invest in its rival system.

On February 6th, the most powerful of rockets got launched by the company. A letter from OneWeb's attorneys to the FCC claims SpaceX has failied to "account for the safety risks of operating in such close orbital proximity to OneWeb and other systems".

Assuming all goes to plan and the test spacecraft work as expected then SpaceX hopes to deploy a vast constellation of 4,425 satellites operating in 83 orbital planes (at altitudes ranging from 1,110 km to 1,325 km) by the end of 2024, which they claim could support "affordable ... fiber-like speeds" nearly anywhere in the world.

It's kind of out of my wheelhouse, but I received insights from many people who think that Tesla could become a customer of SpaceX's satellite constellation.

Starlink is the brainchild of Elon Musk whose aim is to create a "Global Broadband" and deliver high-speed internet connectivity across the world and that to be at affordable rates, with the help of a constellation of thousands of satellites in orbit. The first batch could start going up in 2019.